Malojos

Moving time!

Natalia WilsonComment

I have put this off as long as I could. Not on purpose. I think. There was always something to do, a show to prepare for, orders to fulfill (thank goodness, and let's hope that remains the case), holidays, etc. But, there comes a point when you just have to stop and say either I do this or I don't and it needs to happen, and what needs to happen is I need to move my studio. Whoa! It is not as major a move as it sounds, I am moving from a second floor to a basement, so, no moving trucks, or anything like that. And, the good thing about moving (I keep telling myself) is that it is a chance to organize and get rid of stuff, and make those improvements I had intended to make, but hadn't gotten around to. Sigh. But there is also the disruption to my work, and well, moving furniture downstairs is not fun.

See you soon, tools.

See you soon, tools.

So, what does this mean for orders? It means a few things. For one, my physical studio is not the only thing that is moving. I am also moving the web-store (the url will remain the same, so no worries, you can always find me at malojos.com). So, here is what will happen: while I move my studio, this website will stay up, and you can keep placing orders, but instead of 2-3 weeks to fulfill orders, they will take 4-6 weeks until further notice starting tomorrow (any orders already placed will still get done in the original time-frame, I wouldn't go and surprise you like that.) I really hope to be done sooner than that, but I want to give you a fair estimate on how long it might take for you to get your hand-made goods. Once my studio is in place, I will announce it here and send out a newsletter, and then transition to the new web-store.

You might ask, "why would I want to wait so long for an order?" Well, between you and me, my costs have been going up. So, guess what? Jewelry prices will have to reflect that, and they will when the new web-site opens. So, you might consider everything here on sale. 

Wish me luck on this move, I am slightly angsty over it, but I am sure once I am all settled in, and everything is in place, it will be nice to work in a freshly organized space.

Busy and then a break, and then busy again

Natalia WilsonComment

I will start with the important stuff, an announcement: I will be on a brief vacation between May 25 and May 31, so all orders received after the 22nd will be on that 3 weeks to fulfill end of the spectrum. But, as always, I will communicate with you as to the status of your job, and feel free to email me with questions. However, my vacation is an unplugged kind of vacation (camping!), so do not fret if I do not get back to you between the 25th and the 31st.

I have had a wonderful time vending at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival with Cooperative Press earlier this month, despite the cold and wet weather. We certainly made the best of it!

Our Jurrasic Pond.

Our Jurrasic Pond.

I sense a theme...

I sense a theme...

So much good stuff to buy at the Cooperative Press booth!

So much good stuff to buy at the Cooperative Press booth!

I could honestly fill an entire blog post with images of people taking pictures of our Jurassic Pond, of the sheep (they are not joking about the sheep in the "Sheep and Wool" festival), and oh my goodness the yarn! I was mostly disciplined about buying yarn. Mostly. (Let's just say I knew going in I was going to buy some Neighborhood Fiber Co. yarn, and I did! Other yarn might have also been purchased along the way. Just saying. Oh, and needles. But that my friends really is a whole other blog post.)

When I get back I will be fulfilling orders, but also finally be making plans for moving my studio and website. I have almost everything in place to make that happen. Once I have the date set I will make an announcement here and send out a message on the mailing list. I hope to make it a smooth transition, but I do think I will need to close shop for a very brief period, but nothing major. More on that soon.

Sheep!

Sheep!

Changes

Natalia WilsonComment

Boy, after a flurry of blog posts (more than one a month, I know, my flurry is not your flurry) things got really quiet around here. But, I have been busy on the back end, believe me. With the pesky stuff. Moving things. Clearing things out of corners where they accumulate over the years. Moving more things, and making sure orders get fulfilled, and moving a few more things until the real moving begins in the physical and digital realms.

For ages I have been wanting to dust off this website and make it look shiny and new, but I finally came to the conclusion a couple of months ago that I think it is time to move to a new website all together. At the same time I am in the process of moving my studio from the second floor to the basement, hence all the cleaning and moving of physical things. (12 boxes of boxes lighter, whee!) So, you can probably expect a bit more silence on my end unless it is to post some sad picture of me surrounded by up-ended furniture in the near future. 

As for the digital move, I hope to make that as seamless as possible. The domain will remain the same, as will my email address, so no need to look elsewhere. Prices will be going up a bit on the gauge rings as some of my costs have just jumped (not the digital ones incidentally, although those might go up a bit, but I do think I will be getting more bang for my buck as they say) so if you have been planning on buying a ring, but waiting for the right time, this is a pretty good one. Consider the next 2-3 weeks a pre-moving sale. Once I am ready to turn off the lights on this page, I will let everyone know. Wish me luck! 

More ways to shop!

Natalia WilsonComment

Happy holidays, everyone! I hope you are well during this weird limbo week between Christmas and New Years.

I have an exciting announcement! The shop can now accept PayPal payments along with standard credit card payments. Buying handmade just got a little bit easier, hooray!

Speaking of buying handmade, I enjoyed my few days off, but now it is back to work (thank you!)

Did she say she is getting back to work? I guess we better clear off, but I was just getting the hang of this.

Did she say she is getting back to work?

I guess we better clear off, but I was just getting the hang of this.

Pencils down!

Natalia WilsonComment

I want to thank each and everyone of you who ordered gauge rings and other goodies from the shop over the last few weeks! From here out, one of a kind items in stock in the shop will keep shipping out as you order them, but any gauge rings or custom orders will take at least 3 weeks to fulfill. 

These guys? Not actually helpful in real life.

These guys? Not actually helpful in real life.

If you want to give a gauge ring for Christmas, but can't get it in time, you can always order one, and I can send you a card to give your recipient in the meantime. There is always a way, right? 

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Time to get those holiday orders in!

gauge ringsNatalia WilsonComment

The tiny dinosaurs and I are hard at working getting your orders made and ready to ship (which means it's just me, since tiny plastic dinosaurs are very little help it turns out.)

Hey guys! Put that ring back! We have work to do!

Hey guys! Put that ring back! We have work to do!

Since I am a one woman jewelry making operation, I need enough time to get all of your orders ready for holiday giving. So, if you plan on giving one of the Gauge rings as a Christmas gift, please get those orders in by December 5, 2016 at the latest. One of a kind items that are in stock will ship within 24 hours of the order being placed, and will arrive in 3-4 days. If you have any gift requests, like making sure the box arrives without the company name on the return address, or no invoice in the box, please be sure to leave that in the comments area of your order form when you check out. Thanks, and happy holidays!

Support a small business, and save some money!

Natalia WilsonComment

Who doesn't love a sale, am I right? OK, I am sure there are those who do not, and that is cool, but for the rest of us, this is a crazy sale filled time of year.  Crazy, but it can be fun too. And, supporting a small business is a great thing! When you buy jewelry from malojos, you are buying hand-made jewelry from a Latina, woman-run business, and part of the profits go to charity! Nicely done! But enough about how great you are, what about that sale? Right! From Black Friday through the end of Cyber-Monday you can enjoy 15% off all purchases with the code 15ISGREAT

So, stock up on those dinosaur necklaces, cheat-sheet cuffs, and the ever popular gauge rings, and save some money while you do.

Until then, I wish you all the best on this Thanksgiving. 

Metric lovers, rejoice! Your new ring is (almost) here!

gauge ringsNatalia WilsonComment

You asked, and I listened, the tiny (sock) gauge ring is now available for pre-order in metric!

What do I mean by pre-order? I am making the original models as we speak, so you can order them, and I will make your size when you order it, but it will take a little longer since I will also be making the molds as I go. Normally I take 2-3 weeks to get orders out since I make the rings to order, which I like, since it means I can take your requests into account when I make them. If I kept a large stock, I could only sell you the sizes I had on hand. So, by extra time, I really only mean an extra week unless I get a rush of orders, in which case I would of course contact you with a new time estimate. So, really, it's business as usually, just my way of letting you know it is going to be a little slow going as I build my molds. So, order with confidence, and I am always an email away if you have any questions.

A few announcements

Natalia WilsonComment

A have a few things I want to share with you, so it's update time!

First, I have been updating the shop. You will find the dinosaur necklaces and the cheat sheet cuffs are now in stock, and I will keep adding them as I make them. Thank you for the great response! They make lovely gifts, and you don't even have to guess their ring size (hint, hint.)

Just look at how helpful they are.

Just look at how helpful they are.

Some of the items in the shop, like the gauge rings (also awesome gifts, and I can mail you ring sizer, just contact me) remain the same, but the pictures are finally getting updated as I get more practice with the new camera. (I am even taking a photography class this week!)

In a bit of exciting news, my gauge rings have been featured in the latest issue of Spin + Knit Magazine

Famous! (right...)

Famous! (right...)

Finally, I have been thinking about this for a while. but given the recent events in our country, I have decided now is the time: starting now I am going to be giving a portion of my sales to charity. Every few months the organization I give to will change, maybe annually, I am still fine tuning the details. Right now I am thinking 10% of my profits on all sales. The first organization I have chosen is the Southern Poverty Law Center. I have avoided politics on this blog, and plan to keep doing so, mostly, but I like this organization because I think we can all agree that the most vulnerable members of our society need protection from hate crimes, and we need to protect our civil rights. I hope this is something you can all get behind. Thanks.

NY State Sheep and Wool, a recap.

Natalia WilsonComment

I want to start by saying my first trip to the NY State Sheep and Wool festival will not be my last! What a great fiber festival! I cannot thank Shannon Okey of Cooperative Press enough for inviting Malojos to partner with them in their booth. (And I got to buy a copy of Larissa Brown's, Beautiful Wreck, which I am having a really hard time putting down. I highly recommend this book!)

My little corner of the Cooperative Press booth. The display is made out of an old telephone stand. Neeto!

My little corner of the Cooperative Press booth. The display is made out of an old telephone stand. Neeto!

The response to the rings, dinosaur necklaces and bracelets was great! Thanks for all the love (and sales!)

The festival itself was amazing. Right after enjoying a delicious cup of clam chowder at the Clam Box, I heard a bell ring, and what followed was an alpaca parade! 

Alpaca parade!

Alpaca parade!

The rest was really just a feast for the senses. Between the colors of the leaves outside, and the yarn and all things fiber inside, it was almost too much to take in. The first day I wasn't even sure if I had seen it all (I hadn't.) The sheepy smells, the lotions, and mmmmm... the food, it was all so good. And the pan-flute band. You can cover a lot of songs in pan-flute.

That is one seriously huge (and delicious) cream puff.

That is one seriously huge (and delicious) cream puff.

I met lots of people I have admired from afar for a long time (and they were all wonderful, how cool is that?), and saw so much great work. I came home inspired and ready to work! And, thanks to good sales, I finally bought a good camera, so I can take better pictures for the store! Thank you!

A preview

Natalia WilsonComment
Well known and brand new items debuting at the New York Sheep and Wool Festival, and coming soon to malojos.com!

Well known and brand new items debuting at the New York Sheep and Wool Festival, and coming soon to malojos.com!

I thought you might like a look at what I have been preparing for the NY Sheep and Wool Festival (better known as Rhinebeck.) I am so excited! I am very grateful to my friends at Cooperative Press for giving me the opportunity to sell my jewelry at their booth this year!

As soon as I get back, I will be making more dinosaur necklaces and cheat sheet cuffs, and stocking the web-store with them. Not shown in the picture above are the shawl pins I will also have, they are already in the shop, although they will be coming down for the duration of the show, since I will be taking them with me. Never fear, I will be making more of those as well.

I hope to have all kinds of great news to report when I get back, but right now I have to get back to the bench, those necklaces don't make themselves!

Stepping out from behind the screen

Natalia Wilson1 Comment

If you are going to be the New York Sheep and Wool Festival (better known as Rhinebeck), you can come and see me and my rings and new jewelry in person! Yes, I am not just a phantom jeweler behind a computer screen, honest! In fact, if you come and see me, you will be the first to see this brand new silliness (along with cheat sheet cuff bracelets, and new shawl pins):

I will be selling my jewelry at the wonderful Cooperative Press booth (Booth 37, Building C). If you are not familiar with them, then this is a great opportunity. They publish fantastic knitting and crochet patterns, as well as fiction, and sometimes, it is a combination of both. Come and visit us!

I'm back!

Natalia WilsonComment

Hi everyone, I am back from a lovely trip to Colombia to see my family in Envigado, Medellin, El Retiro and San Vicente. My husband and I were able to sneak away for a little get away in Cartagena. What a beautiful city! Mind you, Envigado and Medellin especially are great, but I had never been to Cartagena before, and I fell in love with the city.

But, for me as a jeweler, one of the highlights was visiting the Museo de Oro Zenú!

 

I am clearly in my element at the Museo de Oro Zenú in Cartagena.

I am clearly in my element at the Museo de Oro Zenú in Cartagena.

But now, I am back to work! I have rings on my bench and in casting to send out to all of the kind and patient people who placed orders while I was away. Thank you, all!

Dear Universe,

gauge rings, shawl pinsNatalia WilsonComment

You know how I said I needed a break? I guess you think I didn't really need it need it, just yet, and would throw a little extra work at me just to be sure. OK! Uncle! 

On the the bright side, the extra work is exciting, and due OMGRIGHTNOWFAST! Involves cameras, which can be fun, because then this happens:

Those dinosaurs get into everything if you are not careful. And I am not.

In other news, although I am getting the last few orders out the door before heading out of town for a couple of weeks, I have added two brand new items to the store, and they are the first of many more: shawl pins! You can see them here:  http://malojos.com/shop/?category=Shawl+Pins

OK, back to work! Ciao for now!

Time to tinker and explore

Natalia WilsonComment

As some of you might know from my infrequent blogging, I have been hinting at working on some new designs, and they have been hiding in the corners of my work bench, waiting for their turn on the bench pin. As luck would have it, you, my friends, have been keeping me quite busy, for which I am very, very grateful! But, it also means that between chasing two kids on summer break, preparing to visit my family in Colombia, and making your rings, both gauges and custom orders, I have been neglecting those new designs.

 

snowflake.jpg

Not to mention, I have not touched this website in any meaningful way since I launched it last March. I am pretty sure in internet time that makes it somewhat pre-historic. Yikes!

So, I am taking a brief hiatus. Wait, wait, don't panic (are you? not really, right?) The store will remain open, and you can place orders. This puts your order in the queue, so you are first in line when I start production again in about a month or so. See, a brief hiatus. Just enough time to work on some new designs, and visit my extended family for a couple of weeks (and if I happen to score some emeralds, well...)

I want to take new pictures, make the website easier to navigate, but mostly make new jewelry with the new tools you have made it possible for me to buy. You guys made this possible! That number 8 ring? You guys! You inspire me, you give me feedback, you sometimes send me amazing messages, and you support my work and make it possible for me to do and try more. So, I am going to try to make the most of this time, and I will stay in touch.

I will fulfill any orders placed this week on time. Any orders placed after Friday, July 22 at 11:59pm Chicago time will go into the queue. Thank you for your understanding and support.

The Goldilocks Ring...

gauge ringsNatalia Wilson1 Comment

... or The Snowflake.

Sometimes you just have to be silly, or sillier than usual, as the case may be. A conversation can spark an idea for a ring that is just too good to let go of, and before you know it, you have this:

When you only need that just right needle, the US size 8.

When you only need that just right needle, the US size 8.

It turns out that many of us have strong feelings about the US size 8 knitting needle. It is the Goldilocks of needles; it is just right. My friend, Shannon, commented that if she had a gauge ring it would only need one size, size US 8. I found it so comical, that I felt compelled to make it. This is just a sneak preview of the ring in its 3D rendered form (in other words, it does not physically exist yet.) Right now I am only making a couple of them, but if you have a great love the US 8, and would buy this ring, leave a comment either here on the blog, or on the Facebook post that will accompany this, and if there is enough interest, I will start making them to order. 

And in case you are wondering, that is a size 8 ring, with 8 holes in US 8. We all need a silly distraction sometimes. Thanks, Shannon.

Away from the things of man...

Natalia WilsonComment

Can you ever really get away from the things of man? (Anyone recognize that quote? It's from my all time favorite movie, Joe Vs. the Volcano.) Anyway, I am packing up a whole bunch of man and woman made comforts, and hauling them into the woods for a few days for a much needed break with my family. Of course I am taking my knit and crochet projects! No trip is complete without them. So, yeah, I am taking a break from making things by going to the woods and making things. It's what I do. 

If you've placed any orders, even today, they are already on my bench and I've gotten started on them, so they should not be delayed. Any orders placed after noon today (5-23-16) will be put on hold until I get back, but feel free to keep shopping! I will be ready to get right back to work when I get back, so the delay will be less than a week unless you guys go on a shopping spree (please feel free to do so), in which case it might be a few days more. I promise to keep you posted when I get back.

Our 1st Birthday!

Natalia WilsonComment

Malojos.com is one year old! It's been a busy year of making, learning, and upgrading, and still always learning, but here we are! Thanks to your wonderful support I've been able to buy better, more ergonomic equipment, and because of your feedback I have been able to continuously improve the gauge rings with little tweeks along the way. 

That ring in the picture is also celebrating its first birthday. When I launched the site, and started getting orders, I was working on this ring, but it was not perfect enough to ship out in my opinion, but still very nice, so I adopted it. I also decided to wear it every day to see how well it holds up to someone who is pretty rough on her hands. I have taken down a tree with a chain saw while wearing this ring. I've moved heavy furniture and tools, and hammered away at rings on a mandrel, all while wearing it. After a year of use and abuse, I am pleased to say it is still solid and round. The gauge is still true, and I do use it to measure some of my vintage crochet hooks. So far, so good!

Finally, a birthday is not complete without a present! Between March 5- March 12, 2016 you can take 10% of any order on the website! Just use the discount code BDAY2016 at checkout! 


Happy New Year!

Natalia WilsonComment

And now, back to work!

I hope everyone had a nice holiday season. I took a nice break to hang out with my family and enjoy the festivities. As nice as that was, I am ready to get back to work. I am already working on the orders I received over the break (thank you!) and am planning on some improvements to my work space, for which I also thank you, since I could not have bought the new equipment without your support (and my back thanks you, too!) I will take pictures once everything is in place.

Well, no time to rest, back to work! Happy New Year! I hope it brings good tidings to all of us.

Yule Time Greetings!

Natalia WilsonComment

Thank you so much to each of you who ordered jewelry and contacted me with questions and ideas over the last month; it has been quite a busy ride, my favorite kind! Today I am shipping out the very last orders placed before today. Whew! 

Below you can see the last orders being prepped for shipping. Once these lovelies go out today, I am taking a break until January 4th. I will keep accepting orders via the website, and start getting them made and out to you as of the 4th. 

Thank you for buying hand-made, and supporting a woman artist. Now this woman is going to hand-make some goodies for her family! Happy Holidays to you all!

A peek at the last rings shipping out, and my notes. There is a method to my madness!

A peek at the last rings shipping out, and my notes. There is a method to my madness!